Aussie renter shocked by landlord's condition for tenants to move out over Christmas

Stock image of landlord and tenant exchanging keys to a rental property.
Stock image of landlord and tenant exchanging keys to a rental property. Photo credit: Getty Images

An Australian renter looking to find a new home was shocked when their prospective landlord revealed they'd need to move out over the Christmas period so he could use the property over the holidays. 

The renter took to Reddit to share their story after receiving a "banger of an email" saying if accepted, they'd need to find a new home over the holiday period - terms and conditions that weren't disclosed before they submitted their application for the property. 

The prospective tenant, from the Australian state of Victoria, said everything had been "going well" in their application for the Paynesville home, which costs AU$ 650 a week. They viewed the property last week and applied for a standard 12-month lease, with the listing stating that six to 12-month leases were available.

"All was going well until we received this banger of an email this morning," they wrote on Reddit. "I think I laughed for about four solid hours after."

An email from the property manager to the prospective tenant said the landlord was "looking at options" for longer-term residents, but was also considering Airbnb "as they want to use the house for a few weeks over the Christmas period". 

"This would effectively mean that you would need to move out for a few weeks over Christmas," they added. "This scenario may not suit you."

The property manager's email.
The property manager's email. Photo credit: Reddit

The property manager suggested the applicant could choose to take a short-term lease and move to another property before Christmas, but conceded that it might not be a suitable arrangement as a tenant. 

"If this is not a suitable arrangement for you please feel free to let me know… if you don't want to proceed I understand," the property manager said in the email, according to a screenshot shared to Reddit by the applicant.

The renter's post has attracted a fierce response from Reddit users, many of whom slammed the "shameless" landlord and his "bloody outrageous" condition for prospective tenants.  

"I'm not even sure which is worse, the landlord expecting to use all their furniture and utensils etc, or for the tenant to totally vacate everything for a few weeks," one person said, adding: "Either way, the audacity is next level."

"I don't honestly know how you would structure a lease like this or how you'd navigate maintenance/bills etc," the applicant said. 

"It's a big ask of a residential tenant and a bit messy with feeling at home."